Brian Baker, the 27-year-old American who was out of action for six years due to injury, proved that good things come to those who wait as he booked a spot into the Wimbledon main draw for the first time in his career.
The American had struggled to find form in the opening set against France’s Maxime Teixeira dropping the first set 5-7. The blip proved temporary, however, and he proceeded to steamroller his way through the next three sets 6-2, 6-1, 6-1 and ensure he will make his Wimbledon debut next week.
“It feels great and is very exciting,” Baker told Wimbledon.com.
“I started off a little slow today but I was able to turn it round pretty quickly. Once I got the first breakpoint the floodgates kind of opened up and I was able to break a lot. I had two match points. It’s never easy closing it out.”
For now Baker’s priority is to take care of his body – the one that has undergone five major operations in as many years. “I’ll maybe take it easy tomorrow, and then Friday, Saturday and Sunday go and hit over at Wimbledon,” he added. “The grand slams are the pinnacle of tennis so it just makes it that much more special coming back and earning my way through qualies and that feels good.”
In other men’s news fellow countryman Jesse Levine moved comfortably into the main draw with a 7-6 (3), 6-1, 6-2 win over compatriot Wayne Odesnik, while ninth seeded Italian Simone Bolelli dispatched Maxime Authom 7-5, 6-3, 6-4.